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3D printing glass

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#1 mconnelley

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Posted 22 February 2018 - 06:06 PM

Hello:

  

    While googling about 3D printing, I found out about these folks:

 

https://www.neptunlab.org

 

  It looks like they've figured out how to 3D print glass so that it's a nice transparent solid, rather than a milky brittle thing as was the case in the past.  Transparent is important, as that means the surface can be polished.  In my mind, this means they could print a nice lightweight mirror blank.  Maybe the blank would need to be annealed afterwards, but that's not too hard.

 

  Has anyone heard of this group before, or know of other groups that can 3D print transparent glass?

Cheers

Mike



#2 CableGuy

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Posted 22 February 2018 - 06:31 PM

additive manufacturing is the future. One day when a part on your car goes you will download and print a new one. That time is coming sooner than later.

 

When it gets to a point that they are able to print a lite weight mirror similar to what Plainwave spends endless hours machining, that will be huge. Even printing a similar mirror that is 80% complete would be huge.



#3 opticsguy

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Posted 22 February 2018 - 08:47 PM

The interesting part is, can a blank be printed with a finished surface ready for a coating??

 

"Liquid Glass" is a nanocomposite containing amorphous silica, which can be structured using by room-temperature replication using soft molds. The solid polymer-composite component is subsequently thermally debound and sintered to a high-quality transparent glass. The resulting glass is chemically and physically identical to commercial fused silica glass. Using “Liquid Glass” it is possible to convert arbitrary physical objects in almost any material into glass rapidly and conveniently with feature sizes in the range of tens of micrometers and surface roughness in the range of a few nanometers. Lamination of cured “Liquid Glass” allows the creation of complex physical structures with e.g. closed cavities or microfluidic channels."


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#4 Jon Isaacs

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Posted 22 February 2018 - 09:22 PM

The interesting part is, can a blank be printed with a finished surface ready for a coating??

 

"Liquid Glass" is a nanocomposite containing amorphous silica, which can be structured using by room-temperature replication using soft molds. The solid polymer-composite component is subsequently thermally debound and sintered to a high-quality transparent glass. The resulting glass is chemically and physically identical to commercial fused silica glass. Using “Liquid Glass” it is possible to convert arbitrary physical objects in almost any material into glass rapidly and conveniently with feature sizes in the range of tens of micrometers and surface roughness in the range of a few nanometers. Lamination of cured “Liquid Glass” allows the creation of complex physical structures with e.g. closed cavities or microfluidic channels."

This is micro fabrication stuff. 

 

Any one watch the video?  

 

https://youtu.be/XsZL7zajgr0

 

Did you catch the size of the objects they are proposing?  Everything is tiny.  Anyone notice the shrinkage as the polymer is removed?  Did you see how much the coin shrunk?   This is a sintering process so with large objects have thermal issues..  I worked in this field.  

 

Jon



#5 calypsob

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Posted 23 February 2018 - 12:56 AM

There are a few companies doing 3d lenses.  https://www.youtube....h?v=shlvUpbj_2I   They work for some things, but have a long way to go before they become optically competitive with fluorite and any of its similar performing counterparts.  But when they do, and you know that they will... We will see some crazy stuff never thought to be possible.  - Imagine the day when someone can finally start 3D printing new correctors for all those busted SCT's out there lol.gif


Edited by calypsob, 23 February 2018 - 12:59 AM.

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#6 ed_turco

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Posted 23 February 2018 - 12:21 PM

Watched the first video.  When all is done, the fabricated part is, surprise, surprise, made of Glass!



#7 arcainemachinest

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Posted 26 February 2018 - 10:06 AM

i wonder at the cost?



#8 MKV

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Posted 26 February 2018 - 12:06 PM

What about annealing?


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#9 Pinbout

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Posted 26 February 2018 - 12:43 PM

definitely nice for sculptures


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#10 dan_h

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Posted 26 February 2018 - 05:58 PM

additive manufacturing is the future. One day when a part on your car goes you will download and print a new one. That time is coming sooner than later.

 

When it gets to a point that they are able to print a lite weight mirror similar to what Plainwave spends endless hours machining, that will be huge. Even printing a similar mirror that is 80% complete would be huge.

Maybe they could print a replicator from the Star Ship Enterprise. That would be much more enjoyable to have since it can also produce ice-cream.  lol.gif

 

dan


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#11 geyes30

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Posted 26 February 2018 - 09:00 PM

I've met the guy who started this project at a conference. The glass comes out a bit cloudy, possibly due to defects in the bulk as well as on the surface.


Edited by geyes30, 26 February 2018 - 09:01 PM.


#12 Oregon-raybender

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Posted 27 February 2018 - 02:07 AM

There are thousands of uses for glass, this process will find it's place. It is a long way from producing optical quality glass for precision optics. I attended a few lectures about this process. It does require annealing. At this point in the research it is closer to glass blowing in a very small scale. I would like to see the transmission results of their efforts for making lenses. Maybe for fiber optics, to replace injection molding now done in plastics.  I have some samples of lenses, but as of yet tested them. I would first use a polarizer to look for high stress. Based on the video, I am sure there is some.

Remember it's the internal defects that are a major cause of glass issues.  Now where did I put those lenses!? wink.gif

 

Always looking forward, glass manufacturers have always searched for the latest tech.waytogo.gif

 

Starry Nights


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#13 Cuspro

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Posted 09 March 2018 - 05:14 PM

Glass 3D printing will certainly find its applications in various fields, like 3D printing service was initially used mostly for prototyping but now its much more than that, prototyping is now just a part of 3D printing! This technology is now even used for short run manufacturing and talking about metal 3D printing it is growing day by day as large format metal parts can be now printed and used in huge engines and machinery so i believe glass 3D printing will certainly gain the pace.

 

Regards,

Shab

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